5 Unexpected Benefits of Yoga
Health and Wellness

5 Unexpected Benefits of Yoga

You might not see this coming.


Before last week, I was a bonafide potato person. I did little-to-no physical activity and didn't like how lazy I felt. I decided to take up some yoga classes thinking it’d at least help me be a bit more active. I didn't expect everything else it would make me feel.

1. Better respect for your body.

Once your yoga teacher has you bending on all sorts of ways you never really thought possible, you begin to become super proud of these hidden capabilities of yours. It’s like finding out you've been this Gumby-Superwoman hybrid all along and had no idea. It almost doesn't even matter how well you do, it’s just a powerful feeling to do something out of the ordinary.

2. Better connectivity to your body.

Not as obvious as it sounds, yoga grounds you closer to your body processes and senses. Not only are you keenly aware of your hamstring stretching to its max (kind of hard to ignore), you'll find yourself hyper aware of when you need rest. When you need to walk away from stress. When you need some more water. When certain foods won't help you digest. It’s a cool feeling to really be in the self, and not just a ghost imprisoned in a ham-sack of bones.

3. Better connectivity to the earth.

The diction makes all the difference in a yoga class. In my 10 or so classes since I've begun, I've had 3 different teachers, all who use phrases like “ground your palm to the earth” or “stretch your arms to the sky.” Something about that word choice transports you to open fields and sunny skies instead of the confines of your sweaty gym, and that appreciation for nature will follow you. I find myself thinking fondly even of dirt; memories being a toddler and digging my toes into the sand taking me to a better place. Never thought my membership to LA Fitness would bring me so much awareness.

4. Self-love like you wouldn't believe.

Yoga teachers of the Vinyasa practice seem to begin with a request to dedicate the practice to someone or something, often encouraging dedication to the self. It’s a moving experience to promise yourself you'll do something while looking at your mirrored reflection. To promise yourself: I’ll stretch a little deeper for you. I'll reach a little further for you. I'll hold this pose longer for you. Showing up and being present for yourself is just that: a present.

5. Better body positivity.

Yoga brings together all walks of life, all ages, all genders, all races, all abilities, all religions, all sizes, in a practice that celebrates personal triumph and victory at whatever pace works for you. Seeing every type of person bend into beautiful formations in such strength and poise, is bound to challenge any conventional ideas of beauty you may have walked in the door with. You'll feel good about others on the same level you'll feel good about yourself.
Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Founders Of Color Q&A: Yarlap's MaryEllen Reider On Destigmatizing Women's Health

The father-daughter duo co-founded the brand and has since generated a passionate, dedicated community of women.

MaryEllen Reider

I was lucky enough to meet MaryEllen Reider over a decade ago as a fellow freshman in college. Since then, I had the luxury of being able to witness her evolution from the faithful companion I went to my first job fair with to the woman who is now a pioneer in destigmatizing the portrayal of women's reproductive health.

Keep Reading... Show less

My favorite Editor was feeling under the weather yesterday. All I wanted was to make her a vegan iced matcha latte. With distance forbidding it, I instead decided to write up this quick, easy recipe. I made it to be vegan and organic for optimal health benefits.

Matcha green tea is made from grounded green tea leaf and it comes with the most antioxidant boost ever.

Keep Reading... Show less

This coffee brand is USDA organic. Newman's Own Keurig coffee flavors are all organic. They have French Roast, Decaf, and a Special Blend. I'm in a committed relationship with the French Roast flavor. The smell alone from dispensing 1 cup of coffee sets a whole cafe jazz vibe.

I'm already relaxed when I smell the coffee all ready for dressing. The way I make my coffee is simple and sweet, literally. I add a spoon of organic brown sugar and a splash of organic almond vanilla milk. This cup of coffee has changed my life forever. I have never been so productive in my life and I truly believe it's because the coffee is organic.

Keep Reading... Show less

These organic, cruelty-free skincare products are great for hot, sweaty summers. I use them every day, so you will find my honest opinion about them all. I highly recommend using organic products because they are least likely to be harmful to your body.

This may seem like an extra step when it comes to your beauty routine, but it's really easy. These 5 products could be the start of your next beauty venture.

Keep Reading... Show less

These 5 Black Handbag Designers Should Be On Every Accessory Lover's Radar

With the push to support more Black-owned businesses, we've put together a list of Black owned handbag designers.

Ever since the current upheaval of societal silence happening in the country caused by the #BlackLivesMatter movement, there has been a bigger push for people to support Black-owned businesses.

Granted, there are a lot fo Black-owned businesses to support, it just takes time to find them. With that being said, fashion is a sector, just like any sector really, in a culture that still has people of color calling out for more diversity.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Feel A Lil' Better: Because Therapy Dogs Aren't Just Cute, They're Working

Your weekly wellness boost from Odyssey.

No matter how good (or bad) you'd describe your health, one thing is for sure: a little boost is ALWAYS a good idea. Whether that's reading a new, motivating book, or listening to a song that speaks to your soul, there are plenty of resources to help your health thrive on any given day.

There are many different ways people overcome obstacles in their lives. Thankfully, the stigma surrounding therapy is slowly (but surely) slipping away and we're opening up about our problems and needs. For some, a good workout is just as relaxing. Others are learning how meditation can be a helpful tool in their mental health journey.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments